Pozadí astronaut Brázda
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Czechs in the whirlwind of a high-speed revolution

It was starting to look like a definitive victory for the cars and planes. For a while now, they have been faster, more comfortable and more reliable modes of travel than old-fashioned trains.

  • Autor: Respekt
• Autor: Respekt
Autor fotografie: Tomki Němec • Autor: Respekt
Autor fotografie: Tomki Němec • Autor: Respekt

It was starting to look like a definitive victory for the cars and planes. For a while now, they have been faster, more comfortable and more reliable modes of travel than old-fashioned trains. But times are changing in transportation. Overflowing airports and congested highways, coupled with fears of global warming, are turning the public eye back to railways. The train is slowly evolving from a „social service“ to a modern way to travel. In Europe it's called a high-speed revolution. The Czech Republic doesn't want to stay behind, but for now it has a lot of catching up to do.

For anyone travelling from Berlin to Prague by train, it must seem like a fascinating trip through time. You get on at the new, super-modern Berlin Hauptbahnhof, where trains criss-cross on rails set on three levels. You get off at the Holešovice station in Prague and encounter something very different. For those who haven't had the pleasure: You walk through what is basically a dark, dingy corridor without any services for travellers (with the possible exception of public toilets). The only somewhat cosy-looking area is casino bar full of the blinking lights of gambling machines and a window where you can buy unfiltered coffee in a plastic cup.

The Holešovice train station, in other words, is a repulsive hole, and any traveller passing through does his best to get away as quickly as possible. But for all the…

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